Monday, December 16, 2013

BUT YOU DON'T "LOOK" SICK

My mother and father both had severe arthritis.  Mom had two hip replacements then it moved to her back.  Along with intense osteoporosis.  My Dad had a knee replacement and needed to have the other knee done but felt Mom needed him to help care for her so he never got it done.  They had a handicap parking permit but got a LOT of "but you don't look handicapped."  She always said thank you.



I have a dear friend who has late stage Parkinson's Disease. At a local restaurant here, you go in and order and THEN you take a table.  My friend cannot stand very long, so while her hubby was in ordering, she sat at a table.  The waitress came by and said no saving tables.  She NEVER tells people about her chronic condition until (and if) they become close friends.  She explained that she needed to sit and that her husband was in line ordering.  Too bad.  You can't sit until he comes out.  That made her mad, so she slowly walked up to the line (which by then was out the door with hungry tourists) to tell her husband she'd rather go elsewhere.  While saying excuse me and trying carefully to get by ... she was pushed (almost knocking her over!) and told "no cutting in line."

She is drop dead gorgeous and looking at her, you would never think she is traveling the journey of painful chronic disease.  She never complains.  She is amazingly cheerful and how she can remain optimistic and thankful is beyond my comprehension.




So BEFORE you speak and prejudge someone's behavior ... physical or mental .... imagine that you don't have half the story.  Maybe the person really is handicapped.

6 comments:

  1. Amen Sistah!

    "Be Kind to Everyone, because Everyone is fighting some kind of battle!"

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  2. The way people judge the handicapped (visible or invisible handicaps) has long been a pet peeve of mine. I pushed a wheelchair around for twelve years and trust me when I say that some people are disrespectful no matter how much your handicap shows. I've heard people argue that a person in a wheelchair doesn't need a handicap parking space because that person is 'riding' in a chair. Few people on this earth are just too selfish to have empathy for others.

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    1. My friend also shared this with me:

      http://www.butyoudontlooksick.com/wpress/wp-content/uploads/2010/02/BYDLS-TheSpoonTheory.pdf

      It's about how she has a limited (and dwindling) amount of energy and how she has to choose how to best use it each day. Awesome!

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  3. Aloha Dear Friend...yes people in Alabama are as rude as those in Paradise when it comes to invisible disabilities...There was a Face Book "friend" who posted "How many freakin' Handicapped parking spaces does a store need!" just 2 days ago... "Merry Freaking ChrIstmas" P.S. Santa came early...just got my state of the arts Rolling Walker that turns on a dime...makes getting from room to room a much easier process with the narrow turn radius... now if I can just get a touch of energy to enjoy it!

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    1. Aloha Leilani! Send me pics of your new "ride"!! I think I would UNFRIEND that person! How rude ... especially if they know YOU.

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